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Battle Lines Drawn Over Gettysburg Casino Plans

13 June 2005

GETTYSBURG, Pennsylvania – As reported by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: "When she heard the news in late April, Susan Star Paddock, of Gettysburg, was stunned, saddened and angered.

"A development group called Chance Enterprises had unveiled plans to build a glitzy gambling palace and health spa outside town on Route 30, a growing commercial corridor not far from the historic battlefields and cemetery of Gettysburg National Military Park.

"The site, now grass and trees, is something Paddock and others, along with many historians, academics and Civil War buffs across the country, consider sacred.

"The casino proposed for Gettysburg is one of a number of pitched battles being fought between developers and preservationists over Civil War sites heavy with history -- Manassas, Vicksburg, and Kennesaw Mountain among them -- that are under increasing pressure from adjacent housing, retail and entertainment projects.

"…In Gettysburg, preservationists are getting help from national groups, such as the Civil War Preservation Trust and Friends of the National Parks at Gettysburg.

"…The casino plan has created the biggest uproar in Gettysburg since a 393-foot steel observation tower was built on private land just outside the national park in 1974.

"…Promoters maintain it will help fill local hotels, shops and eateries, even though the casino will have its own hotel and restaurant…"

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